Bay Area Asian American Elected Officials Strive to Help Our Kids Thrive by Asking for Yes Vote on Prop. 55

As election day draws closer, local teachers, parents and other education advocates held a press conference today, highlighting the local support for Proposition 55, which will prevent nearly $4 billion in funding cuts to education. Local elected officials are urging their constituents to do their part.

Proposition 55 maintains the current income tax rates on the wealthiest Californians in order to protect public education and other vital services, like children’s health care, from cuts.

“Schools and students in this region took big hits during the recession, painful cuts we are just starting to recover from,” said Assemblymember David Chiu (D) – San Francisco “Now is not the time to cut funding for education, which would force our schools back to the days of teacher layoffs, larger class sizes and cuts to programs. We can prevent cuts simply by maintaining the current tax rates on the wealthiest Californians with a yes vote on Prop. 55.”

“Californians need to ask themselves – what can we do to help our kids and public schools? The answer is simple – we need to vote yes on Prop. 55 this November. We must continue to support funding our schools and never go back to those recent days of teacher layoffs, larger class sizes and cuts to important programs like music and arts,” said Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D) - Oakland. “Students in the Bay Area are depending on us to stand up once again in support of their education.”

The Local Control Funding Formula awarded $490 million in state funding for the SFUSD in 2016-17. The funding model is at the center of budget administrators concerns moving beyond next fiscal year, as the state has closed the once large gap between what it wants to offer the school district in funding per student and what it can afford by 96 percent. School funding in the state is very closely tied to state revenues which could be negatively affected by Prop 55’s failure to pass.

In addition to these local supporters and organizations, the large and growing coalition supporting Prop. 55 includes the California Teachers Association, California Federation of Teachers, California School Employees Association, California State PTA, California Medical Association, California Labor Federation, Health Access California, League of Women Voters, Children’s Defense Fund, and Children’s Hospital Association, as well as numerous elected officials and dozens of schools boards across the state.

Paid for by Yes on 55 - Californians for Budget Stability, Sponsored by Teachers, Health Care Providers, Doctors and Labor Organizations. Major funding by California Hospitals Committee on Issues, (CHCI) Sponsored by California Association of Hospitals and Health Systems (CAHHS) and California Teachers Association/Issues PAC (committee). Printed In-House.
Proposition 55, the California Children’s Education and Health Care Protection Act of 2016, is not a tax increase, it simply maintains the current income tax rates on the wealthiest Californians for 12 more years – singles earning more than $250,000 and couples earning more than $500,000 a year. Prop. 55 directs funds specifically to K-12 public education and community colleges, while also allocating funds to health care for low-income children and their families. The proposition contains strict accountability requirements.

Budget forecasts show that unless we extend the current taxes on the wealthy, which would continue to bring in an average of $8 billion in annual revenues, our public schools will lose nearly $4 billion and our state budget will face a deficit of more than $4 billion in the first full year alone.